Describes common causes of dental abscesses, including cracked teeth, leaking dental restorations and lateral root canals. The body’s response to an abscess is illustrated, including increased blood flow to the tooth (hyperemia) to deliver immune-competent cells. Death of the pulp tissues (necrosis) is discussed. Abscess is described as a true dental emergency, requiring urgent care. Common treatments are discussed, including antibiotics, endodontic (root canal) therapy, and tooth removal (extraction).